On Wednesday, May 10, 2023, Honorable Pauline Newman, a Federal Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, filed an action for declaratory and injunctive relief against Hon. Kimberly A, Moore, Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, and several other justices before the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.

The case is entitled “Hon. Pauline Newman v. Hon. Kimberly A. Moore,” with case no. 23-CV-1334.

On April 12, 2023, it was stated that Chief Judge Kimberly Moore filed a judicial complaint against the 95-year-old jurist claiming that she has probable cause to believe that the latter is unable to effectively discharge the duties of her office. Specifically, the allegation state that Judge Newman is slow when it comes to the issuance of opinions, which affects the administration of justice. Moreover, Judge Moore revealed that she heard stories from colleagues and others at the court that caused her to raise her concerns about Judge Newman’s overall ability to serve.

The report states:

“According to the report, Chief Judge Moore was willing to resolve her grievance with Judge Newman if she agrees to take her senior status. However, Judge Newman refused to consider the same which led Chief Judge Moore to file a complaint under the Judicial Conduct and Disability Act challenging Judge Newman.

But according to PATENTLYOJudge Newman refused to participate in the process or receive any documents related to the said complaint. Additionally, she has declined to submit to a medical examination to take senior status or retire.  Her refusal to participate in the process serves as an additional cause in the complaint.”

However, on May 10, 2023, Hon. Newman filed a declaratory and injunctive relief against Hon. Moore stating that Hon. Moore’s orders and threats constitute an attempt to remove her from office — and already have unlawfully removed her from hearing cases— without impeachment is in violation of the U.S. Constitution. Judge Newman emphasized that neither the act nor the conduct rules authorize either a Chief Judge acting alone or a judicial council of any circuit to issue any orders or directives which have the effect of precluding an active Article III judge from being assigned cases in regular order while an investigation is still underway.

Moreover, Judge Newman stated that the continued investigation into the plaintiff’s conduct violates the fundamental principles of due process because the special committee is composed of witnesses to the plaintiff’s alleged disability.

The claims for relief state:

“The March 24 Order and May 3 Order specifically reference, as the basis for the beginning and continuing investigation the “ personal observations ” of the special committee members and other members of the Judicial Council. It has been established for centuries that one cannot serve as a “ judge in his own cause. ” Permitting the Judicial Council and its special committee to continue the disciplinary proceedings against Plaintiff in a case where all members of the Judicial Council are actual or potential witnesses violates Plaintiff’s Fifth Amendment right to due process of law.”

Judge Newman also argued that neither the act nor the U.S. Constitution authorizes compelling an Article III judge to undergo a medical or psychiatric examination or to surrender to any investigative authority her private medical records in furtherance of an investigation into whether the judge suffers from a mental or physical disability that renders her unable to discharge all the duties of the office. Plaintiff enjoys the right to be secure in her person and effects against unreasonable search and seizures, as guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Lastly, the plaintiff notes that the defendants lack either a warrant issued on probable cause by a neutral judicial official or a constitutionally reasonable basis for requiring her to submit to an involuntary medical or psychiatric examination. Accordingly, compelling her to undergo an involuntary medical or psychiatric examination also violates the plaintiff’s Fourth Amendment rights.

Based on these foregoing reasons, Judge Newman requested the court for declaratory and injunctive relief against the defendants.

The relief requested states:

“WHEREFORE, Plaintiff respectfully requests that the Court: (1) declare the Act to be unconstitutional, either in whole or in part and enjoin Defendants from enforcing the Act to the extent it is unconstitutional; (2) declare any continued proceedings against Plaintiff by the Judicial Council of the Federal Circuit to be unconstitutional as violative of due process of law and enjoin Defendants from continuing any such proceedings, except to the extent necessary to transfer the matter to a judicial council of another circuit; (3) order the termination of any further investigation of Plaintiff by the Judicial Council of the Federal Circuit; “

Judge Newman attended the New York University School of Law, graduating in 1952.

Judge Newman sits as a Federal Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit located at 717 Madison Place, NW, Washington, DC 20439, and can be reached at (202) 275-8000. Her info can be found on Ballotpedia.org.

A copy of the original filing can be found here.